Chairman quits Addleshaws as firm offloads showbiz practice

Addleshaw Goddard is severing its remaining ties with the music and film legacy of Theodore Goddard by axing four partners, including iconic chairman Paddy Grafton-Green.

The partners are leaving the firm to join Michael Simkins, the firm formed late last year after the dissolution of media and entertainment boutique The Simkins Partnership.

Grafton-Green said Addleshaws was setting “more demanding” targets as it sought more well remunerated corporate and finance work.

“Media work doesn’t have the same level of profitability,” he added.

The exits flag up the aggression with which Addleshaws is targeting revenue and profit growth. This year the firm has budgeted for an average profit per equity partner in excess of £500,000, a figure that would be difficult for the entertainment team to reach.

The departures also highlight how difficult it is to maintain entertainment practices within City firms. As with most music and film practices, the team operates at a low leverage of around one partner to one assistant, or fewer. Addleshaws’ average leverage is above 1:4.

Grafton-Green, 63, is retiring from the firm on 30 April having negotiated an extension to Addleshaws’ standard retirement age of 62 at the time of the merger.